Adelaide And The Barossa Valley
Trip Start Jan 03, 2012
163Trip End May 02, 2013
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There were a few interesting individuals staying in the character-filled Annie's Place, which reminded Jason of houses in Toronto's Annex area that he might have lived in during university. Roger, a married father of one from South Africa, sold everything back home and moved to the area in search of the prosperity his family had enjoyed before the end of apartheid. He was more than willing to offer his own perspective on the political tensions leading to his decision to leave. A couple of others from England were on multi-year journeys in Australia and other parts of the world, working and travelling as time and funds allowed
The next morning we drove out to the Barossa Valley wine region to dabble in a few fine vintages. Wolf Blass, a staple from back home, was our first stop. A circular structure surrounding the logo eagle on a pedestal provided a very inviting venue. We tasted several of their best offerings and finished with an aged tawny, which would be a theme of the day. We made plans to add this varietal to our dessert menu back home.
Speaking of themes, the word of the day was 'wasted'. On the drive out two songs had it in the title, including 'Wasted Daylight' by Stars and 'Wasted Hours' by Arcade Fire plus 'Wasting Time' by Jack Johnson along similar lines. We cruised into Tanunda and rented bicycles for the afternoon. The cellar doors put their best bottles forward and we savoured every sip. Sylvia's favourite was a berry chocolatey grenache from Langmeil while Jason favoured the 20 year old tawny from the same vineyard. They even had original vines planted in the 1840's that still produce some of the region's finest fruit. The late fall colours that were still on the vines were stunning in the sunlight.
Four more wineries and over 20 wine tastes later we finally decided on a 1996 cabernet sauvignon from Richmond Grove to take with us. We raced back into town to meet our bike return deadline and, while looking back to make sure Sylvia was okay, Jason had to screech to a halt and abandon his bike before tumbling forward with hands oustretched into a car that had just pulled up to the intersection in front of him. His sore thumb swelled and ached for a while but it could have been much worse.
We ate cheese with crackers made in Canada and granola bars containing Canadian maple syrup while waiting for the buzz to subside, then drove back to the city. It was packing night in preparation for our morning flight to the red centre.
With the sun in our eyes, we dropped off the i30 at Adelaide airport with 3,430 km added to the odometer. Another rental had been very good to us and we hoped for similar comforts in the coming months.